City of Athens Relay for Life Team

The City of Athens traditionally has a Relay for Life Team to support the efforts of the American Cancer Society and to support local cancer patients with medical-related travel expenses, wigs, scarves and support groups. 

Based on available records, the City of Athens Relay for Life Team has raised over $174,000 for the American Cancer Society since 1999. 

American Cancer Society toll free hotline (available 24 hours a day, seven days a week): 1-800-ACS-2345

Vintage Relay Shirt Flyer 2019

The Athens community is using caring and commitment as tools to continue its fight against cancer.

The City of Athens Relay for Life Team announced it raised $12,500 for the American Cancer Society despite the inability to hold three of its main fundraisers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Team Captain Holly Hollman and team member Mayor Ronnie Marks presented a check to ACS Senior Community Development Manager Cherry Hammonds at City Hall.

“I was expecting $2,500 or $5,000 at the most because I know you were not able to do several of your fundraisers,” Hammonds said. “This shows what a great community you have in Athens and Limestone County.”

Relay for Life check presentation with Mayor Marks, Cherry Hammonds and Holly Hollman

Hollman said the team normally raises between $20,000 and $25,000 but was not able to host its annual Relay for Life Bass Fishing Tournament, Celebrity Waiters Night and Cattlemen’s Steak Sandwich fundraisers. However, the sponsors who support the fishing tournament told the team to keep their sponsorship money as donations. That allowed the team to make the $12,500 donation.

“Recently all the Limestone County teams held a luminary ceremony at the Courthouse to honor those who have or are fighting cancer,” said Hollman, whose mother is a cancer survivor. “There were rows and rows of names of people from our community who are survivors or who fought a hard battle until the end. When you see those names, it reminds you every dollar helps us fight for them.”

Funding supports research, including 8 grants currently in Alabama that equal a $4-million investment, Hope Lodge in places like Birmingham and Nashville where patients and caregivers can stay for extended treatments, a 24-hour hotline and awareness programs.

“Our team is both moved and motivated by the commitment our local and area businesses have shown by allowing us to keep their sponsorships as donations,” Hollman said.

Those businesses are:

• Power Supply

• Core & Main

• Consolidated Pipe

• Morell Engineering

• Park Supply

• Thomasson Company

• Gresco

• Cahaba

• Wesco

• Athens Gas

• Athens Electric

• American Overhead Door

• Hughes Gas

“All of us have been impacted by cancer in some way,” said Marks, who lost a brother and sister-in-law to cancer. “I am proud of this team and these businesses for demonstrating a love of our community and finding ways despite COVID-19 to make an impact in this fight.”

Catching a 'Spark' of kindness

Spark Academy at Cowart Elementary first graders who visited City Hall a few months ago asked how they can make a difference in their community. City of Athens Relay for Life Team Captain Holly Hollman told them the team collects cola tabs and along with Elkmont Church of Christ, sends them to Ronald McDonald House of Memphis. RMHM provides support for children and families who have a child undergoing treatment at St. Jude.

The first graders listened and acted! They collected 39 pounds of cola tabs by making marketing posters for their school. Their teachers also had them learn math. The students put the tabs in gallon bags and weighed them to count how many they collected.

The students presented the City of Athens Relay Team with their collection today, and they promised to keep up the good work. They know first hand the impact because one of the school's students currently goes to St. Jude for treatment and the family stays at Ronald McDonald House.

Upcoming Fundraisers and Events

City of Athens Relay for Life Events and Fundraisers
  • Hope. Fight. Relay. purple garden flags, $15. Call 256-233-8730.
  • Relay for Life stained glass sun catchers in the shape of a purple ribbon, made by High Cotton Arts artist Denise Maurer, $20. Call 256-233-8730.
  • Vintage Relay T-shirts "35 Years Strong"; $20 short or long sleeve or $22 for 2X or 3X; Comfort Color; pre-orders due by Oct. 18. Call 256-233-8730.
  • DELAYED DUE TO COVID-19: Will announce new date later - Limestone Cattlemen's Steak Sandwich Lunch
  • DELAYED DUE TO COVID-19: Will announce a new date later - Celebrity Waiters Night at Applebee's
  • Bass Fishing Tournament Spring - TENTATIVELY rescheduled by Ingalls Harbor for May 9 - will depend on any amendments to the COVID-19 state health order
  • Dan Williams Memorial Blood Drive - To Be Announced

City of Athens Relay for Life Team Fights Back and Supports Community

  • We recycle cellphones for money that goes to the American Cancer Society. Drop off your unused cellphones at City Hall for Chanel Taylor or Holly Hollman.   
  • We recycle cola tabs for Ronald McDonald House at St. Jude. Bring your cola tabs in a Ziplock bag to City Hall for Kim Glaze or Holly Hollman.
  • We support various cancer awareness months by wearing our awareness colors and sharing information. Those that hold a special place in our hearts include Gynecologic Cancer and Childhood Cancer Awareness both in September, Breast Cancer Awareness in October, Pancreatic Cancer Awareness in November, and Colon Cancer Awareness in March.
  • We support events for survivors and those currently battling cancer.
  • We host an annual blood drive in May in honor of the late Rep. Dan Williams, a former mayor of Athens who died from leukemia.
first place 2015
  1. Fundraise
The City of Athens Relay for Life Team conducts various fundraisers throughout the year. The fundraisers include a Celebrity Waiters Night, Bass Fishing Tournament, T-shirt sales, and more. 
Aerial view of people forming a ribbon shape in a field
  1. Educate

The City of Athens Relay for Life Team promotes education about treatments, research and prevention. The website provides the latest information from the American Cancer Society.

City of Athens Relay Team 2017
  1. Celebrate
We refuse to let cancer have the last word. Each year, the City Team celebrates victories won at the annual Relay for Life of Limestone County event, traditionally held in May. We cheer those participating in the Survivors Walk, encourage those still battling cancer, and thank those who are supporting our fundraising efforts.

If you are interested in honoring a loved one or supporting our team, please email Team Captain Holly Hollman at